"Faith, n. Belief without evidence, in what is told by one
who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel."
Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary)
"Reason, therefore, here, as contradistinguished to faith,
I take to be the discovery of such propositions or truths, which the
mind arrives at by deduction made from such ideas, which it has got by
the use of its natural faculties; viz. by sensation or reflection.
, on the other side, is the assent to any proposition, not
thus made by the deductions of reason, but upon the credit of the
proposer, as coming from God, in some extraordinary way of
communication. This way of discovering truths to men, we call
Locke, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding)
"Nothing that is contrary to, and inconsistent with, the clear and
self-evident dictates of reason, has a right to be urged or assented
to as a matter of faith, wherein reason hath nothing to do."
"Philosophy has no end in view save truth; faith looks for nothing
but obedience and piety."
"A friend of mine heard the following (part) dialogue between two
strong Scotch Calvinists:
"Noo! hoo manny d'ye thank there are of the alact on
the arth at this moment? - Eh! mabbee a doozen -
Hoot! mon! nae so mony as thot!""
"Nothing is more difficult and requires more care than
philosophical deduction, nor is there any thing more adverse to its
accuracy than fixity of opinion. The man who is certain he is right is
almost sure to be wrong; and he has the additional misfortune of
inevitably remaining so. All our theories are fixed upon uncertain
data, and all of them want alteration and support. Ever since the
world began opinion has changed with the progress of things, and it is
something more than absurd to suppose that we have a certain claim to
perfection; or that we are in the possession of the acme of
intellectuality which has, or can result from human thought. Why our
successors should not displace us in our opinions, as well as in
persons, it is difficult to say; it ever has been so, and from an
analogy would be supposed to continue so. And yet with all the
practical evidence of the fallibility of our opinions, all and none
more than philosophers, are ready to assert the real truth of their
(Michael Faraday, quoted in
"The lust of fame is the last that a wise man shakes off."
"Fame is the advantage of being known to people
who we don't know, and who don't know us."
"The conditions which created Fascism there must not pass unnoticed
here. Their first and most dangerous symptom is always the same
everywhere: an abandonment of equal justice to all, the placing of
some groups in a preferred class of citizenship at the expense of
"The first step in a fascist movement is the combination under an
energetic leader of a number of men who possess more than the average
share of leisure, brutality and stupidity. The next step is to
fascinate fools and muzzle the intelligent, by emotional excitement on
the one hand, and terrorism on the other."
"It is harder to hide feelings we have than to feign those we
"A! fredome is a noble thing!
Fredome mayse man to haiff liking
Fredome al solace to man giffis
He levys at eas that frely levys."
"Those who deny freedom for others deserve it not for themselves."
"Without free speech no search for truth is possible; without free
speech no discovery of truth is useful; without free speech progress
is checked and the nations no longer march forward towards the nobler
life which the future holds for men. Better a thousandfold abuse of
free speech than denial of free speech. The abuse dies in a day, but
the denial slays the life of the people and entombs the hope of the